While some steeplechase horses enjoyed a summer break, others ran at Virginia and New York racetracks as part of the National Steeplechase Association’s summer season. Jump racing is about to be back in full swing as September marks the beginning of the fall racing season and kicks off in Maryland on Saturday, September 30 at Shawan Downs.

Legacy Chase at Shawan Downs – Robert Keller photo

Last year, the Maryland Steeplechase Association announced that the Legacy Chase at Shawan Downs and the Cattail Chase Races (new in 2022) would be joining the Governor’s Cup Series and would mark the start of a new season. Points accumulated at Shawan and Cattail in 2023 will carry over to 2024, when the spring season starts. The Legacy Chase has been a fixture on the National Steeplechase Association calendar, and the success of the Cattail Chase Races in 2022 ensured its return in 2023. Conditions for both race meets can be found in the MSA Condition Book.

The Legacy Chase at Shawan Downs on September 30 will feature a full card of hurdle and timber races, headlined by the $35,000 Brown Advisory Timber Stakes. This year, instead of a training flat, a timber race for amateur or apprentice riders will be carded.

Not only is Shawan Downs one of the best racecourses for viewing races, spectators can enjoy the vendor village, kids zone, and purchase cocktails from one of the new sky box bars. New ticket/parking options are available this year, including access to the VIP tent. Click here for VIP tent tickets, and here for all other tickets.

New this year at the Legacy Chase: Friday night Calcutta and flat racing. Catch some live racing action on Friday, September 29 and enjoy an open bar, appetizers, and auction from 5 – 7:30pm. Tickets required and can be purchased here.

Cattail Chase Races – Tisa Della Volpe photo

The Cattail Chase Races will be run on Sunday, October 15 at Pleasant Prospect Farm. This is the only point-to-point of the fall season and one of few point-to-points all year to offer purse money, including $2,000 in trainer bonuses. The day is headlined by The Waterford, a $15,000 Open Timber race. In addition to timber races, pony flat races will be offered for junior riders and the popular Leadline Trot race will return.

There will be ample opportunities for spectators to tailgate, and food trucks, a beer garden, and live music will be on site this year as well. Tickets can be purchased here.

Keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for updates through September and October.

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